Saturday, January 17, 2009

Olympic Low VOC Paint, and more...

In my continuing quest to find paint that doesn't burn my brains out with its odor while simultaneously offering me a vast array of color choices and not emptying my bank account, I tried out Olympic low-odor (and VOC free) paint from Lowes. I also checked out their low VOC primer.
Apparently, all of Olympic's premium interior paints are now VOC free, and truly very very low odor. They do have a large selection of colors, and claim that they can match any color they can find in their database. Since they offered, I thought I'd test that out with a color swatch I'd picked from Behr. And they matched it!
Unfortunately the color was wrong... but two shades lighter on the same strip from Behr looked very promising, so back I went! But the second time, despite multiple attempts, they were unable to match the color- it kept coming out wierdly yellowish grey. So I picked a very similar line from their own selection, which also turned out to be the wrong color once I got it up on the wall...
So back I went! Again! I was tearing through their racks of color trying to find an Olympic swatch that matched the Behr swatch I had when the mixing guy (who at this point new my face quite well) came and offered to try another match. And again, despite six modifications, he failed... but I took the paint anyway because he had tried so hard... (have I mentioned before I'm kind of a sucker?)
CONCLUSION: The primer had a low but noticeable odor, and very splotchy coverage. It was enough that one layer of light paint over it was sufficient, but it did splatter a lot during application with a roller (hat and drop cloth not optional!) The paint was odorless, splattered much less than the primer during application, but also had patchy coverage unless I was really careful. It liked to go on a little thick. On the wall where I had primed, one careful (light colored) layer was sufficient, but two coats on a non-primed surface still required some touching up.

OLYMPIC VS. FRESHAIRE CHOICE: I have to give the leg up to Olympic because of the color range, and also because it seemed to stick better to the wall (is there a term for that?) Once it was dry I pushed the furniture right up against it and it hasn't rubbed off yet! And Olympic is about $10 cheaper, which helps.

WHY am I painting? you may ask... here's a little hint:

Darn it, I'm so bad at hints! I always get too excited and give everything away! Though this time I haven't actually, because that isn't even the final paint color! Though it does hint at it... : )

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